Does God really talk to us?
It was May, 1981, I was on a train from Delhi to Ernakulam, Kerala . I had just completed my Masters in O R (Operations Research) from the prestigious St.Stephen’s College, Delhi and was going home. The journey was symbolic, in the sense that It marked the end of a rather exciting and enjoyable student life.
As I settled onto my berth, my thoughts drifted towards the future. Yes, I was at the threshold of a professional career. Some of my friends had already got job offers, few of them had even begun work. I had decided to take a couple of months off to relax at home before embarking on my search for a job. My mother had died of cancer barely 6 months earlier and I felt it was important for me to spend some time with my father.
Given my background in O R and Mathematics, I was looking forward to a possible career as a Systems Analyst. I was also open to taking up a Marketing assignment. I felt I would be good at marketing since I enjoyed meeting people, traveling and facing up to challenges
Having studied in one of India’s top colleges, I was confident of making a mark in life. I believed that finding a job would be a simple matter of routine. As I hopped off the train at Ernakulam, I was delighted to see my father at the station. He seemed equally thrilled to meet up with his Post Graduate son.
After a month or so, I began my job hunt in right earnest. I developed my CV. I made it a point to mention that I was Visually Impaired, since I was clear that my potential employers needed to know about my disability before they hired me.
Every morning the newspaper was scanned, jobs were identified and applications were sent. Surprise! Surprise! contrary to my expectations, the response was far from being overwhelming. Infact there were just the three or four polite regret letters that said “Your CV is indeed impressive, however we do not have a suitable job for you at the moment. Will get in touch with you as soon as something comes up.” A little disappointing, but then I pressed on.
My father sent my CV to some of his friends who had volunteered to try and help. An uncle of mine who had retired from one of India’s top Industrial groups wrote to some of his contacts. Nothing seemed to be working out. I guess, people did not want to take a chance with my disability.
My confidence that was sky high scarcely a few months before, had started dwindling. I felt , I was running out of options. For the first time in life, my disability seemed to pose a genuine challenge. I could see myself withdrawing into a shell. Social gatherings and family get togethers no longer seemed to hold their charm.
To make matters worse, I could sense an attitude change amongst relatives and family friends. I overheard some of them share their concern with my father. They appeared to be sorry for me. I heard them ask questions like “What is his future? Do you have any plans? It must be really tough on you “ and so on
All of a sudden, I felt terribly alone. I began to miss my mother. She had been a source of solid support and strength during my growing up years. She was one person, I could confide in. Frustration and self pity started creeping in and I could see myself slipping to a new low with every passing day.
Something had to be done. Nearly nine months had gone by and no progress had been made. Most of my friends from college had got themselves jobs and were well on their way. My mother had always told me that there was a God above and that nothing happened without His knowledge. She would say that, “We need to have Faith. Nothing is impossible with Him. He is truly the Living God and He loves you.” She had further told me, “Son, whenever you are in trouble, turn to Him.”
Finally as a last option, I turned to God. I spent hours reading my large print Bible and praying. I prayed with feeling. My mother’s reassuring words kept coming back to me. ”Nothing is impossible with God”. I was determined to get God onto my case. Days went by and nothing changed, but I persisted. I realized that I Had no other option. I surrendered myself entirely to God and told Him to shape and mould my life.
It was early April, 1982. I was woken up at 4 in the morning. It wasn’t a voice that shook me from my slumber, it was a commanding thought that totally changed my life. The thought filled me with tremendous energy. I had never felt like that before. I could not wait for my father to wake up. For the next three hours or so, I paced restlessly in my room. Millions of thoughts and ideas raced across my mind. I was literally jumping up and down.
I believe that God had spoken to me and had given me definite direction. He said” Son, if you want to do something in life, go out and do it yourself. Go out in Faith and the World will be at your feet.” I had made up my mind. I decided to take the first available train to Delhi , since that was the city I knew best. When I shared my morning’s experience with my father, he readily agreed. He said “Son, go for it.”
A week later I was on the train bound for the capital full of positive energy. The 52 hours on the train gave me the time to take stock of things and charter a plan of action. Advertising was the career I had chosen. The depression and despair of the past nine odd months had given way to hope and anticipation. I could not wait for things to happen
I arrived in Delhi on the 21st of April, 1982. Three days later I landed my first job with one of the country’s larger Advertising agencies. I was appointed as Trainee Accounts Executive. This was the beginning of a journey that had been specially chosen for me by the Living God. Yes the job was waiting for me. I had just to go out in Faith and get it. Nothing is impossible with God. I have realized and learnt that if I am prepared to surrender my life to God and live in Faith, He will work wonders. Who says God does not talk to us. Ask me.